Female accountants paid fifth less than male counterparts

FEMALE ACCOUNTANTS are closing the gap on their male equivalents in terms of remuneration, new research has revealed.

The average salary of female accountants is currently 81% of the average male salary, up from 77% in 2010 research by specialist financial recruitment company Marks Sattin has revealed.

The company looked at the Office for National Statistics and found the average salary for female accountants is £32,080 compared to £38,500 for men.

However, more than half of the women surveyed consider their gender to be a barrier to success in the workplace compared to just 12% of men. This is reflected in the statistic that less than 14% of Big 4 UK board members (and the European board of KPMG) are female.

Following a report by Lord Davies the UK government is encouraging FTSE 100 and FTSE 250 companies to ensure at least 25% of their board positions are occupied by women by 2015, however the latest Confederation of Business and Industry report puts that figure at just 14.5%.

Dave Way, managing director of Marks Sattin said: “The accountancy industry must be proud that the gender pay gap is being narrowed, but the fact that women working full-time are still receiving a fifth less than their male peers reminds us all of the vital work that needs to be done to ensure female accountants operate on a level playing field.

“One of the biggest drivers of the conspicuous absence of women in top positions is a sense of disenfranchisement among female employees from the tops of companies. The fact that so many more women than men consider themselves at a disadvantage in terms of career development is testament to this. It’s essential employers work hard to encourage and develop female talent for the top roles, but also that women actively push themselves forward for senior roles and don’t allow the historical precedent to determine the future composition of board rooms”.

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